catfish - definition and synonyms

verb [transitive] 

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present tense
present participlecatfishing
past tensecatfished
past participlecatfished
  1. to trick someone into having an online relationship by adopting a fake identity

    People who catfish others usually make up fake lives so they can be as extravagant as they want to be.

Word story
The expression comes from the 2010 documentary ’Catfish’, which deals with a relationship of this kind.